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Arousing Delight celebrates the acquisition by the Clarke Library's Lucile Clarke Children's Library of one of the nation's leading collections of Arthur Rackham material. Obtained in 2005 from Wright State University, the Mary Harbage Collection, added a large number of Rackham works to those already found in the Clarke. The result was the creation of a research collection with great richness and depth. The library's Board of Governors and staff are extraordinary pleased to make this resource available to researchers and the public.
The Board of Governors and staff are also deeply indebted to the Friends of Library, whose financial support made the acquisition of the Mary Harbage Collection, as well as this exhibit, possible. Over the years the library's Friends have helped the Clarke's holdings grow in many ways. This, however, is surely one of the most important acquisitions the Friends group has made possible.
In creating this catalog and the exhibit that accompanies it, a large number of debts were incurred. Professor Anne Alton worked with great diligence to create the erudite text that appears in this publication. A Canadian by birth, she educated an editor unfamiliar with the world of children's illustrations and tolerated my tampering with all sorts of matters, including the spelling of words such as "colour" and "catalogue" to bring the Queen's English into conformity with American usage. I am grateful for her learning, her tolerance, and her sense of "humour," as both Anne and Her Majesty would prefer it spelled.
Jennifer Wood took on the considerable task of developing the bibliography found in this publication. Describing the books by and about Arthur Rackham found in the Clarke created many challenges and difficulties. She has my gratitude for dealing with these problems in a most thorough manner and also for tolerating my constant questions with much good (not being a Canadian) humor.
Rebecca Zeiss spent many hours creating the graphics that accompany the exhibition. Her expertise and aesthetic sense have greatly enriched the presentation in the Clarke Library's Molson and Meijer Galleries. Pat Thelen was responsible for the scans that are reprinted in this volume. Mary Graham took on the difficult responsibility of copyediting and proof reading; including such tasks as reminding me that word "copyediting" is one, not two, words. Although other commitments made it impossible for her to spend as much time on this catalog as she would have liked, she nevertheless greatly improved the text printed here. Amy Motz accomplished the considerable task of converting the text into the format required for printing.
And like Dr. Alton who thanked her family for their patience, my thanks to Valerie, Matt, and Nick for all they sacrificed in seeing this exhibit to its end.
Frank Boles